Valentine’s Day Smooches Contest

FabBabyGearValentinesDaySmoochesContest

Anybody can enter! You can be smooching your incoming baby’s ultrasound picture, momma-to-be’s belly, a peck on your little one’s cheek or a slobbery smooch from your pooch.

  1. Send us a message on Facebook with your photo by 11:59 p.m. on Friday February 7th.
  2. On February 8th, we will post your picture into a Facebook album called “Valentine’s Day Smooches Contest.”
  3. Have your friends and family like our page and then like your photo.
  4. The picture with the most likes by 4 p.m. on Friday February 14th will win our Valentine’s Day prize pack worth over $85!

Here’s a link to the official Facebook post: http://tinyurl.com/od3cv4l

Don’t forget to share the contest on your wall so your friends and family can get in on the fun too. Best of luck and start smooching! ♥

 

FAB Guide to Winterlude 2014

Since winter is here to stay and you need to keep your babes at bay, we thought that a guide to the capital’s famous winter festival would be fitting. With three weeks of fun-filled winter activities, we’ve got you covered on what to wear, where to go and other tips during the 36th edition of Winterlude.

With nearly 600,000 people in attendance each year, it’s no wonder Winterlude is the place to be in February. The festivities kick off on Friday January 31st at 7 p.m. in Confederation Park with Winterlude’s Great Winter Ball and conclude on Monday February 17th. From skating to snacking and ice sculptures and sliding, there is plenty for the whole family to enjoy.

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WHAT TO WEAR

This winter in Ottawa, we’ve seen temperatures drop to the near 40s with the wind chill and days with sunshine and single digits, so you can never be too cautious when dressing your little ones for a day outside. The key here is layering. If it’s too hot, they can take something off and when Jack Frost comes nipping, they can bundle back up.

This week at all our Fab store locations and online, you can save 25% our winter gear stock. Pick up a pair of mimiTENS for little fingers and a pair of Stonz Booties to keep tiny toes toasty. If you’re looking for a little more coverage from the cool winter air, try a 7am Enfant Le Sac Igloo. Bundle your babes up in the cozy bunting bag while they’re in a sleigh, stroller or carrier.

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WHERE TO GO

There are three main locations that Winterlude activities take place. The first is the Crystal Gardens in Confederation Park. Ice carvers from across the globe showcase their talents by turning big blocks of ice into beautiful sculptures. In the evening the sculptures are lit up with captivating and colourful lights that bring their masterpieces to life. From there you can snack on sticky maple syrup sticks, learn a bit about Canadian heritage at various kiosks them slip over to your next location.

The Rideau Canal Skateway is the world’s largest skating rink measuring at nearly 8 km of slippery fun. Several vendors are located along the skateway allowing you to rent skates, warm up and buy the renowned Beaver Tail treat. On Feberuary 1st, the Winterlude Triathlon takes place where hundreds of winter enthusiast race down 8 km of ice, ski for 5 km and wrap it all up with a 5 km run. In addition to the winter sport fun is the Great Canadian Beaver Cup Pond Hockey Classic on Dow’s Lake. From February 7-9, watch the teams go head to head for some good old fashion winter fun.

Last, but most certainly not least is Jacques-Cartier Park in Gatineau, home to the biggest snow playground on the continent! The Snowflake Kingdom is where you’ll find all the fun and snowy activities you and your kids will love. Slide down the Chinook, Iceberg and Glacier super slides or experience the XTRÊME Zone where you’ll find a four-line zipline, pedal go-karts, bungee trampoline and the all new giant snow maze. While you’re there, try to find the Ice Hog family for a cuddly hug. The mysterious winter creatures have come to the capital to celebrate Winterlude for many years and enjoy the winter festivities.

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HELPFUL TIPS

  • Pack snacks: Though Beaver Tails and hot dogs are a fun way to keep their bellies full, pack some little snacks to keep your kids energized and happy. Trail mix, granola bars and crackers are easy non-perishable treats.
  • Bring cash:  Though there are several ATMs along the way, most vendors only accept cash which results in long lineups and tired little ones. If you’re planning on grabbing some hot cocoa, beat the crowd by carrying some small change on you.
  • Take the OLG Sno-Bus: On all three Winterlude weekends (Feb 1-2, Feb 8-9 and Feb 15-16), OC Transpo and OLG provide several free shuttle buses that travel to all the different events.
  • Bring backup: Sometimes little mittens get lost and socks get soggy, so pack an extra pair just in case.

Indoor Winter Activities

It sure has been a chilly winter so far and with wind chills and runny noses, sometimes it’s best to keep your little ones inside for the day. So while the mittens and boots are tucked away, here are some great indoor activities to do with your kids.

Puppet Show:

CateLeviGiraffeYou can create your own theatre or scope out the best spot behind the couch and create a magnificent puppet show with your children. We have some beautiful puppets from Cate and Levi that are made of cozy reclaimed sweaters and are proudly Canadian. With cute characters to choose from like frogs, moose and even a walrus, your little ones can act out their favourite stories or create their own.

Indoor Concert:

JanodMusicalSetWithGuitarJust like the Brady Bunch, you can start up your very own family band and hold an indoor concert! Whether you have pots and pans or the real deal, music is always a fun way to play. This musical set from Janod has  everything you’ll need to go on tour. It includes a trumpet, harmonica, tambourine, a kid-sized guitar and a fun clapper. The five piece set is made of wood and comes in cool confetti colours.

Youngster Café:

HapeGardenSaladSometimes it’s okay to let them play with their food, especially when it’s in their very own Youngster Café. Your mini chefs can toss up some gourmet fun with the playfully delicious Garden Salad from Hape or serve you up a fresh croissant with a cup of espresso with the Janod Espresso Machine. Once pretend play is over, you can prepare a fun and healthy snack with your kids from our Kid-Friendly Snacks Pinterest board.

Snow Removal:

GreentoysTractorEven though they’re stuck inside all day, you can bring the white fluffy snow inside in the form of cotton balls! The Green Toys dump truck is the perfect vehicle to get the job done. Lay out a bunch of cozy cotton and allow your kids to scoop them up with the truck or even the Green Toys tractor.

However you spend your days, we hope they are filled with quality fun and giggles. Happy winter!

Last Minute Christmas Gift Guide

Christmas is officially one week away today and if you’re like me, you still have just about everyone to buy for. There is no need to dash around town into busy shopping malls and crowded parking lots, here at FAB, we have everything you need for your tiny tots, expecting moms and new parents in a stress-free, funky and always friendly environment. You can find all the following items in-store or online at fabbabygear.com.

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Stocking Stuffers:

  • Looking for a quick fix to fill up those stockings hung in a row? Your kids will love our fun and friendly finger puppet books. -$12.99
  • The cute and playful Squeak Easy toys from Rich Frog come in several different animals like cats, dogs, frogs and more! – $9.99.
  • The Picasso in your family will colour up a storm with a P’kolino Crayons and Markers set. -$24.99
  • Your kids can vroom and zoom around with Hape’s Mini Vehicles. The little cars are made from bamboo and come in seven different colours and designs. – $6.99

 Expecting moms

  • Expecting-MomAs baby grows, mommy’s clothes start to get a little snug around her tummy, but fit everywhere else. The BellaBand from Ingrid and Isabel makes wearing mommy’s favourite pants possible by comfortably wrapping around pants to keep them up without the bumpy buttons. – $32.99
  • Belly aches and sick days are common for expecting mommas. Erbaviva Quease-ease Lip Balm helps soothe queasiness during pregnancy with ginger and peppermint essential oils that are long lasting and calming. – $10.99
  • Spoil mom with a stylish and sophisticated Strorksak Elizabeth diaper bag in Dove Grey that will conveniently transition into a functional purse once baby is all grown up. It is made from leather with a bunch of pockets and storage. – $344.99
  • Keep baby close and snuggly while being hands-free with the Boba Wrap. Available in beautiful colours and design, the clothe wrap can be wrapped in any way with baby in any position to maximize yours and baby’s comfort.

NewParents New parents:

  • The babyletto Grayson Mini Crib is a perfect gift for parents that like to travel or for Grandma and Grandpa’s house. The easy-fold crib is equipped with safety hinges and lockable castor wheels and comes in three different colours. – $399.99
  • New moms and dads are busy people with their new bundle of joys. The Beaba Babycook Baby Food Maker is a miracle worker when it comes to making meals for little ones. It steams, cooks and blends quickly and efficiently. – $149.99
  • On-the-go or in small spaces, the Lobster Portable Highchair from Phil&Teds makes it easy for baby to eat anywhere at any time. The highchair can be secured to most tabletops and saves space. – $79.99
  • What better place to keep their first lock of hair and pictures of their first steps than in the Petit Collage Baby Book and Memory Box. The cute designs make it a nice and sacred place to keep all of baby’s special memories. – $59.99

 Newborns:

  • A little Wubbanub pal is perfect for a new baby.Newborn The plush toy attached to the pacifier brings comfort and security to baby. – $13.99
  •  With five natural products, the Burt’s Bee’s Baby Bee Getting Started Kit has everything to start baby off healthy and pure. It includes nourishing lotion, shampoo and body wash, diaper ointment buttermilk soap and nourishing oil. – $19.99
  • Give baby a toy they can chew, touch and fall in love with. Baby will have a ball with the Owl & Friends Trio from Skip Hop. The three plush balls have crinkles and rattles and more. – $17.99
  • Cuddle baby up in a muslin swaddle from Aden + Anais. They are made of super soft rayon from bamboo fiber and come in great colours. – $49.99

0-6Months 0 – 6 months:

  • Keep baby busy this year with the Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Play Gym. The comfy and colorful mat features many toys and activities for baby to discover. With rattles, mirrors and lights, your little learner will have a blast. – $109.99
  • A true baby legend, Sophie the Giraffe from Vuli is the hottest teething toy around. Her soft and light-weight body is easy to hold for tiny fingers and she is made with all-natural rubber. – $23.99
  • The Hug & Hide Owl from Skip Hop gives tiny tots an array of developmental activities to discover. From playing peek-a-boo with the mini owl to crinkling and jingling, there will be no shortage of fun. – $19.99
  • At home or on-the-go, the Sili Squeeze Food Pouches are a great gift for hungry tots. They can be filled with homemade purees or pre-made favourite like yogurt and applesauce. – $21.99

6 – 12 months:6-12

  • Now they’ll know their ABCs thanks to B. Toys’ Elemenosqueeze! These soft non-traditional alphabet blocks have cute little animals hand-carved into them and can even be used for tub-time play. – $41.99
  • From bouncy bunnies to funky monkeys, Jellycat Bashful plush toys are cute, cuddly and the perfect hugging companion. – $19.99
  • Winter can be blustery and cold, but baby still has places to go and people to see. The Le Sac Igloo from 7am Enfant solves the dilemma of whether or not to take baby out in the cold. Le Sac Igloo protects baby from the wind, cold, snow and rain while keeping them snuggly and warm. It can easily be worn in any carrier or stroller. – $129.99
  • Your little ones can learn to brush and comb their hair with the Skip Hop Hare set. The fun design encourages young ones to gain grooming and hygiene independence. – $24.99

1-2Years 1 – 2 years:

  • There are plenty of fish in the sea, but none of them are as cool and fun as the Grimm Fish Puzzle. With rainbow colours and different shapes and sizes to discovers, kids will learn and grow while developing hand eye coordination skills with the hand-crafted wooden puzzle. – $79.99
  •  They can learn their ABCs, 123s and animal friends with Uncle Goose’s ABC Blocks. With beautiful colours and designs, these wooden blocks are a classic gift. – $49.99
  • The Wishbone 3-in-1 Balance Bike will grow with your kids as they learn to master balancing while being introduced to the concept of a bike. It starts out as a tricycle, changes to a balance bicycle and then flips to become one of the largest balance bikes on the market. – $249.99
  • Your little ones can talk and walk and play with the Janod ABC Buggy. There are colourful blocks to build and a sturdy handle to push the buggy around. – $89.99

3 years +:3years

  • Green Toys Trucks are a classic gift with a modern eco-friendly twist. Available in many different models like the classic dump truck, recycling truck and even a tractor, any child would enjoy pushing one of these around. – $34.99
  • With a sleek and elegant look, the 30-key Hape Grand Piano is the perfectly sized piano to create musical masterpieces. Available in pink and black, the little learner in your life can create a world of possibilities. – $149.99
  • Your kids can care and nurture for the sick little animals with the B.Toys Critter Clinic. The toy also comes with all the veterinarian tools your little vet needs to help others. – $59.99
  • Breakfast during the holidays will never be the same with the Hape Pop-Up Toaster. Your kids can make toast and honey for the whole family while having plenty of imaginative fun. – $24.99

Best of luck with your holiday shopping and have a healthy and happy holiday season and New Year. Make sure to come visit us in store at 1244 Wellington Street and 755 Bank Street in Ottawa or 286 Danforth Avenue in Toronto and don’t forget, we’re always open online at fabbabygear.com.

Cloth Diaper Throwdown: Omaïki AIO vs AppleCheeks Pocket

Omaiki Vs AppleCheeks

Cloth diapering has regained popularity recently as more and more parents seek a healthier, more eco-friendly lifestyle. New parents are choosing reusable diapers over disposables for a myriad of reasons. Cloth diapering is less expensive and better for the environment.  Additionally, cloth diapered babies experience fewer bum rashes and tend to potty learn earlier than their comrades in ‘sposies (SOLD!)

In our quest to provide our customers with the best products available we’ve taken on two fantastic but different cloth diaper brands: Omaïki and AppleCheeks. Not all cloth diapers are created equal (we’ve moved far beyond your granny’s days of giant plastic baby pants) and in this post we’ll discuss the anatomy of each as well as how they differ to help you get the right fit (pun totally intended!) Continue reading

Back To School (But Not For Baby)

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As we draw closer and closer to September, many of us are preparing our children to head back to school. If you’re like me and your eldest is gearing up for her first year of full days then you’re probably preparing yourself more than anything else (*sniffle sniffle). Back to school time is rife with shopping trips to compile the necessary arsenal of gear, talks about expectations, and an attempt to restore some semblance of a routine pre game day. As I prepare our household for the big day, I can’t help but look at my almost 2-year and wonder how she’ll handle her big sis and best friend being gone all day.  Continue reading